Diabetes is now at record levels in the United States—almost 34 million Americans, or 10.5% of people are affected. The condition happens when your body is not able to adequately deal with blood sugar. That can harm your blood vessels through your body, possibly leading to heart disease, stroke, blindness, or even amputation. But diabetes generally does not happen overnight. Little things you do routinely, without thinking, might be seriously increasing your risk. Here is what doctors who deal with diabetes patients report are the most common everyday habits that cause diabetes.
1 — Sugary Drinks
One of the top unhealthy habits you can have is drinking soda to quench your thirst, when what you really need is water. The sugar inside these items commonly drunk can get very high—a Super Gulp usually has a handful of sugar; a can of sweet cereal or soda is much more that your body can handle. For many folks, stopping soda instantly causes a rapid 20-pound weight loss.
2 — Consuming Too Much Sugar
Diabetes is when your body cannot give enough insulin to allow glucose (sugar) into your body’s cells of your body. The best way to stop this is to stay on a diet that does not harm your insulin supply. Experts recommend choosing food items that break down slowly or don’t have much sugar—for example, protein, vegetables, and whole grains instead of sweets or refined grains.
3 — Not Getting Enough Exercise
A sedentary lifestyle is one major risk factor for getting diabetes. But there is good news: Any activity can help your insulin sensitivity and slow the onset of diabetes. Experts suggest sneaking some extra walking into your daily routine: Park at the back of your work parking lot instead at the front; get up early to go for a walk instead of sleeping in; take a walk instead of going for dessert; or walk your dog a few times a day.
4 — Making Unhealthy Food Decisions
Experts also give these tips to avoid the overeating that could cause diabetes and other health issues:
- Don’t purchase snacks. If it is not in your house, you won’t eat it.
- Practice portion control by using smaller plates.
- Eat your vegetables and salad before other foods instead of after.
- Consider meat as a side dish, and portion it correctly to vegetables.
- Make use of spices to enhance your food’s flavor, instead of sauces.
Author: Steven Sinclaire